Tag Archives: fearlessness

Featured Intent: Fearless through the Shadows

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We love our community’s commitment to grow in fearlessness.
The truth is we all face fears and they come in all shapes and sizes.
Not all fears are imagined either. You may be facing a real threat and so you do not need to feel compelled to disqualify your concerns. In fact, that is exactly what we’re talking about today. Our featured intent is about remaining fearless through the shadows, through the fears that are really looming.

You too? Here are 3 resources to help: Continue reading

Love More, Fear Less

I came up with this mantra over the course of the past several years, as I struggled to regain my self-esteem. Within one month in 2005, I separated from my husband and partner of 9 years, and watched in horror as my father’s conviction for a federal crime appeared on the local news and front page of the Honolulu newspaper.

My entire world crumbled. I went from a relatively smooth and easy existence in which I demanded no less than perfection from myself and those around me (and succeeded at almost everything), to a lost soul who didn’t know who she was or what she stood for. Anxiety consumed me. I couldn’t sleep without taking pills. I became convinced, at age 32, that I’d never have a family of my own.

Yoga, meditation, poetry, being in nature, and the love of friends and family got me through these dark days. I began to see how fear controls us and causes us to act from a place of panic, a mentality of scarcity, and an attitude of grasping. I adopted the mantra, "Fear less." And that helped a great deal. But something was missing…

In the spring of 2010, I journeyed to Haiti post-earthquake to volunteer with Sean Penn’s non-profit, J/P HRO. Some family members and many others advised against it. "It’s too dangerous," they said. But I remembered to "fear less," took a deep breath, raised $4,000, and ventured onward. In the tent villages of Port-au-Prince, offering counseling, hugs, and smiles to people who had lost homes, family members, everything, the completion of my mantra came to me loud and clear: LOVE MORE.

By giving to others, we heal our own wounds. We become happier, more fulfilled, and even live longer. So yes, FEAR LESS: take on your demons, push yourself past your limits, be brave and bold. But also, LOVE MORE, starting with yourself. You are beautiful, unique, and totally love-able. You have so much to offer the world.

PHOTO (cc): Flickr / kilobar

Burning Up Your Fear by Walking on Fire!

Walking on hot coals is not in our DNA! We were keynote teachers at a "No Mind Festival" in Sweden. The grand finale was to be a firewalk. Ed began to get mentally prepared and reminded himself each day that he would be walking over red-hot embers. As frightening as it appeared, he knew it was a way to confront his fears head on.

Deb had hurt her knee so could not participate but Ed recalls: "I was anxious to do it but had huge moments of hesitation. It is something I have always wanted to do as I love to confront myself—I always ski the edge and have bungee jumped in Greece. Now it was time to firewalk. Confronting fear is my way of dealing with the unimaginable. Maybe it’s because I was a scardey cat as a kid, I was not the daring type.

"We had a long pre-training session, learning how to condition the mind to do something that sounds impossible. Peggy Dylan, our Firewalking trainer, was confident we would all be fine and she instilled that faith and confidence in us. Somehow I had no doubt. I found myself being the first person to walk. And I loved it!"

It was clear to us the amount of awareness such a challenging experience demands, as it takes us far beyond our normal limitations and into a place that the ordinary mind can barely comprehend.

As Peggy Dylan says in our book BE THE CHANGE, “People have walked on fire for thousands of years in many different ceremonies, and the purpose has always been to use the walk as a prayer, or as a way of transcending whatever is ill to create greater well-being, which is also the purpose of meditation. It is used to gather power and energy, to gather a sense of capacity that comes when we transcend our human restrictions, as we step through the barrier of fear before we take that first step onto the coals. We have no idea what is going to happen when we walk on fire. But there is also no way to know what is going to be happening in five years or even five minutes. What the firewalk teaches us, is that when we step forward in trust, faith, and courage, then there is a benevolent aspect of the universe that steps with us.

“In that place of trust, no matter how challenging the world looks or how challenging our personal lives may be, we can just feel the fear. I will take a group of four hundred and collectively we drop into that fear. We acknowledge the fear, acknowledge the sense of failure, the sense of I can’t, I won’t, and I’ve always failed in the past. And then we transcend it into hope, capacity, and a positive form of movement.

"One of the beauties of firewalking is that you cannot pretend those are not hot coals; you stand in front of the fire and it is real. Your delicate feet are real feet. You are stepping through fear and knowing in your body that what you think will happen does not have to happen. In other words, there can be exquisite positive outcomes from events that you previously thought would have a negative consequence. This is indelibly printed on the subconscious. I can do remarkable things, I can step through fear and manifest beauty, manifest joy, manifest healing, and it is in the body.

“Even though we cannot consciously comprehend what we are doing, when we step onto the fire our bodies are in a state of connection with all that is; we are touching the same place we go to in meditation, the place of stepping into the unknown."

Are you a firewalker? How do you deal with or confront your fear? Do comment below. You can order a copy of our latest book at: BE THE CHANGE, How Meditation Can Transform You and the World.

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Ed and Deb Shapiro’s new book, BE THE CHANGE, How Meditation Can Transform You And The World, forewords by the Dalai Lama and Robert Thurman, with contributors Marianne Williamson, astronaut Edgar Mitchell, Michael Beckwith, Jon Kabat-Zinn, Byron Katie, Jack Kornfield, and others. Our next BE THE CHANGE talk and workshop: March 12th and 13th in Boulder, Colorado. Call: Gloria at 303 449 3066

Experience our 3 meditation CD’s: Metta — Loving kindness and Forgiveness; Samadhi – Breath Awareness and Insight; and Yoga Nidra – Inner Conscious Relaxation, available at: www.EdandDebShapiro.com  

Deb is the author of the award-winning book YOUR BODY SPEAKS YOUR MIND.

 

Smiling at Fear: Pema Chodron

What do you fear most— the Swine Flu, or the Swine Flu vaccine? Airport terrorists, or airport security searches? Growing old, or the alternative?

If you answered "all of the above," you’ll guess why I went to a weekend retreat on fear with Pema Chodron, the noted Buddhist teacher and author of When Things Fall Apart– held in upstate New York at the Omega Institute. Through the yellow leaves of a beautiful New England autumn, hundreds of people flocked to this finale of Omega’s fall season.

Pema (as she invites people to call her) immediately dispelled many common misunderstandings about fear:

Myth # 1: The way to overcome fear is by acting fearless

Whistling at our fear, assuming a brave stance, "vaccinating" ourselves with affirmations, seeking out the psychic police for protection, or even pole-vaulting headlong into fear like would-be Olympians are the common strategies many of us use to overcome terror. But whether we seek protection, or try to prove how brave we are, we miss fear’s true opportunity to teach us authentic courage.

When people ask, "why are you afraid?" or assure us that, "You don’t have to be afraid," they aim to be helpful. But invalidating our reason for being fearful, subtly implies that it’s shameful to have feelings of fear. From childhood up, many of us have received these kinds of messages.

That’s why we declare fearlessness, or even sky dive to conquer fear– bypassing the creepy descent into the fearful feelings that are nature’s only fear medicine.

Psychologists call it "counter-phobic" to engage in risky behavior, walk down dark alleys, or do other scary things to demonstrate courage. A woman friend and I once went on a group tour to Tunisia. Soon bored by the droning tour guide, we decided to drive off to explore a scenic region, congratulating ourselves on our spirit of adventure. That was before the ninety mile an hour road chase in a deserted rural area with a carful of screaming men racing to catch up with us. 

"We don’t have to put on courage like a tough protective armor," Pema told the group. Instead of banishing fear, or making ourselves wrong for feeling fearful–allowing ourselves to go into fear and deeply feel it is the way to become spiritual warriors.

Truth # 1: The way to overcome fear is to feel fear

Myth # 2: Safety first: Avoiding fear is the only way to feel safe

Loss of love, health, home, cognizance, money, power, control. Abuse, physical danger, disease, injury, and death. These are some of the things we naturally fear.

In childhood, we skulk away from the playground bully, strange people in cars, fringe neighborhoods, and rollercoaster rides. In adulthood, we may try to avoid horror films, foreigners with strange names, the news, contagious germs, bureaucracies, or even airports. I’ve fallen out of contact with certain acquaintances who, following 9/11, became too fearful to visit my home town of New York City. Eight years of one way visits unbalanced the reciprocity in the relationships.

Seeking safety at all costs has two obvious pitfalls:

1.    We limit our potential when we fail to challenge ourselves to grow–and wind up bland, bored, addicted, and/or stuck–and yes, even overweight or obese as we stuff down our feelings with bland "comfort" foods
2.    We project our fear onto outside things or people, dub them terrorists, and give them power to not only scare us but to turn us, our lives, and even our country into a padded prison, (even a cushy one) surrounded by barbed wire, our bombs tossed from a safe distance, as we turn our heads away to deny the harm we do.

If we cannot run towards fear to assert our bravery, if we can’t run away and avoid what makes us fearful, how can we deal with fear? According to Pema Chodron, we can stand our ground and be with our fear. Just that is the basis of fearlessness.

Truth # 2: Be with fear

In the retreat, inspired by Smiling at Fear, a newly published book by Chodron’s teacher, Trungpa Rinpoche, we practiced checking in with ourselves to experience fear right there and then. Making this a regular practice has had an astonishing effect, exactly as Pema predicted, "When you learn to smile at your fear, to be with your fear, you become an authentic friend to yourself, and thereby develop confidence."

It’s not that you become confident that you will encounter a germ-free world, access the strongest drugs, possess the smartest bomb, or hold the secret to love, fame and fortune.

The confidence is that you will be there for yourself always, come what may.

For health and psycholog news, insight, and action, get the free Health Outlook ezine at www.health-journalist.com

Fearlessness

One of the greatest lessons during my life has been anger. My earliest years as a child were peppered with abuse, shouting, fighting, aggression, and alcohol-fuelled knife wielding by parent figures.

In turn I learned how to be angry, how to express my anger, and how to let my frustration at that which did not resonate with my inner yearning to come through me as a growl or a shout. I would escalate my anger, to the point of tears and a gut-wrenching swell.

In time I came to discover that this anger was a symptom that followed when I felt helplessness or fear. As I looked back to my childhood I started to realize that I must have felt very helpless, and filled with fear as those that I should have been able to love lived through their anger.

Through the realization of helplessness come another: In forgiving myself, and those who contributed to this lesson, I have found a gift. In finding peace I have found a gentleness and calmness. And in slowing down to understand this lesson I have discovered a fearlessness. This poem is a reflection of my journey, of how I had to lose myself in my doubt, and be stirred by awe to shed the first tears of healing. Only in finding tenderness have I been able to discover fearlessness.

Fearlessness

There is no dry land,
amid the ocean that you chart.
Your wind is your fearlessness,
and it blows from your heart.

The course to your freedom,
is beyond waves of concern,
through storms of restless anxiety,
slow, find that which you yearn.

Drop anchor, relax with your fear.
Drive into moments of doubt.
Let wonder evoke that first tear,
and tender child within swim out.

Real fearlessness comes from within,
product of tenderness and awe.
Feel the ocean woo the drop,
and never have need of the shore.

Copyright (c) 2009, Carmien Owen

PANIC: 3 Ways You Can Turn Panic Into Happiness

We are witnessing an outbreak of panic and fear as people in the US respond with misunderstanding and ignorance to falsely perceived threats to their welfare. There is a tremendous fear of and resistance to change, which cause further suffering.

Panic affects us all at different times, but for some it dominates their day-to-day life. "I had panic all through my childhood until I was 13. I grew up at the base of the Himalaya Mountains and I was afraid of snowstorms, earthquakes, fire, and sometimes for no reason – I was just fearful, I did not sleep well, I panicked very easily."

We were talking with Mingyur Rinpoche, a Tibetan Buddhist teacher, about his new book,Joyful Wisdom. He is openly honest about what he has been through. However, Mingyur did something with his panic that few of us are able to: where most of us feel overcome by panic or try to suppress it, he made friends with it — he turned his enemy into his ally.

"There are two ways we actually make panic worse: we say Yes Sir to it, or Get Out. If we sayYes Sir then we do anything that the panic wants us to do, we let it rule us. But if we fear panic or try to get rid of it, and we say Get Out, then this just makes panic into the enemy. Either way, panic gets bigger and we become less able to cope."

So how can you turn panic into your friend? The answer is surprisingly simple: by becoming aware of it. "Awareness means seeing it, feeling it, and then panic becomes many different pieces: physical sensations, emotions, frightened images, words, thoughts. So awareness is of all the pieces. If you are not aware of the panic then you are a victim of it; awareness is saying hello and inviting it in."

Turning your panic into happiness:

1. Become aware of the panic. Seeing it for what it is without judgment, that it is neither good or bad.

2. Shift your focus away from Yes Sir or Get Out. Normally, when we are panicked, our breathing is shallow and rapid. To help you shift the focus you can bring your breathing down to the belly, away from the panic. Soft belly breathing: breathing deeply all the way in and out, then relaxing and breathing in again slowly, with a soft and relaxed belly.

3. Develop love and compassion by becoming a friend to yourself. Then you can understand that others panic, that every person in every moment, every breath, every thought, every movement, is looking for happiness – we are no different, we all want the same, we are all part of the big family.

Amazingly, Mingyur was just 13 years old when he discovered the transformative power of meditation. The more he practiced, the more he was able to be with the panic and not let it run his life. "Meditation enabled me to witness my panic. Normally my busy monkey mind ran the show by telling me to be panicked or to hide. Meditation gave me greater freedom of the mind as it gave a job to the monkey mind and I become the boss."

"Who makes problems? We humans. And who is the controller of the human? The mind. And how to control the human mind? Through meditation. If you can control the pilot, then the pilot can control the plane," says Mingyur in our new book, BE THE CHANGE, How Meditation Can Transform You and The World.

In this way, panic can become our friend and teacher, something we can learn so much from about ourselves. "Panic pushed me into understanding myself more deeply, it opened my heart so that I have greater understanding that others are suffering too."

Sitting quietly in meditation, can silently repeat: May I have happiness and causes of happiness. May I be well, may I be peaceful, may others be well, may others be peaceful.

Do you have stories of when you were able to transform panic? Do comment below.

You can pre-order a copy of our book at: BE THE CHANGE, How Meditation Can Transform You and the World. It will be published Nov 3.

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Ed and Deb Shapiro’s new book, BE THE CHANGE, How Meditation Can Transform You And The World, forewords by the Dalai Lama and Robert Thurman, with contributors such as Marianne Williamson, astronaut Edgar Mitchell, Ellen Burstyn, Michael Beckwith, Jon Kabat-Zinn, Jane Fonda, Jack Kornfield, Byron Katie, Ed Begley, Bernie Glassman, Russell Bishop, and others, will be published Nov 3 2009 by Sterling Ethos.

Deb is the author of the award-winning book YOUR BODY SPEAKS YOUR MIND. Ed and Deb are the authors of over 15 books, and lead meditation retreats and workshops. They are corporate consultants, and the creators of Chillout daily inspirational text messages on Sprint cell phones. See: www.EdandDebShapiro.com











Why Actress Ellen Burstyn Slept on a NYC Street: Stepping Out of Your Comfort Zone

We all dread stepping out of what is familiar and known: your comfort zone. But when we do, we can discover enormous reserves of strength within ourselves, as actress Ellen Burstyn told us she did when she was homeless.

Most of us have a deep fear that the unthinkable could possibly happen to us, such as becoming homeless. In today’s economy, many people are finding themselves on the street through no fault of their own. Yet how many of us acknowledge street people as fellow human beings with needs no different from ours, simply without the means to fulfill them? Instead, how often do we avert our eyes when we pass them by and pretend they do not exist?

In an attempt to find out what it would take to see homeless people as being no different from ourselves, Rev. James Morton, the dean of St. John the Divine Cathedral in New York, began an experiment. As Zen teacher Grover Gauntt explained:

“He designed what he called the plunge: an act of diving into unknown waters and getting completely whacked and disorientated so you can orientate yourself in a new way. And he applied this to the street by sending his ministers out without any money, no place to live, no identification, just like the people they were serving. The first thing they did, quite naturally, was to go to the churches and ask for help, but, of course, very few would help them.”

From here developed the idea of street retreats: living on the street for a few days as a spiritual practice, intended to bring people into the very midst of society’s neediest, and by doing so to seek a place of inclusivity. Bernie Glassman, founding teacher of the Zen Peacemaker Order, talked to us for our book, BE THE CHANGE, How Meditation Can Transform You and the World. He said:

“The homelessness that exists in our society is due to treating people as throwaways, and it will only end when we stop seeing them as garbage. Street retreats are where we live and practice meditation on the streets, begging and sleeping rough just as any homeless person would. We meet for meditation periods together and then disperse to do what we have to in order to survive, such as finding food to eat and boxes to sleep on.”

Bernie continued: “I included meditation as I wanted to show that meditation is not just sitting on a cushion but reaches out to every aspect of life. It is a way of bringing us into a state of inclusivity and of not-knowing, and when that happens, the experience of oneness arises. But at the same time we have the experience of not existing. When you are homeless and begging, people walk past you, you are completely ignored, you simply do not exist. When you have been so ignored, it is impossible to do that to another person. You can no longer look away from anybody or anything.”

Ellen Burstyn had this experience of being ignored when she did a street retreat and lived on the street with the homeless. In our book she told us:

“I did the street retreat because I was so afraid of it. I could physically feel how much fear I had about being away from my comfort zone, my bed, and especially not having any identity. The whole idea of begging was terrifying. The first time I did it, I had to a cross a street to a restaurant with tables outside. Two women were eating there and I decided to approach them. As I walked toward them, I felt like I was crossing over some line that I had consciously never known was there. I was purposefully stepping through my ego to experience what was on the other side. I approached the women and simply asked, ‘Excuse me, but I need a dollar for the subway. Could either of you spare a dollar?’ The woman closest to me reached into her pocket and handed me a dollar without taking her eyes off her companion’s face. I said ‘Thank you’ and walked away. I felt a strange pride that I had really accomplished something, but then enormous sadness as I realized that neither of the women had looked at me. I had got what I needed, but I had been disregarded, I had not been seen.”

This invisibility is one of the biggest difficulties for the homeless. As Grover Gauntt, who is a street retreat leader, says:

“Just a day can seem like forever as it is so intense. Suddenly, you do not have the money to get home, buy a cup of tea, make a phone call, or do anything. Fear rises as you are without any identity, any way of saying you are who you are. How do you relate to this world now? You have to find a place to sleep; you have to beg for food. And you watch people move their eyes to avoid seeing you. When we don’t have the experience of something, then we tend to negate or categorize it. Homeless people get categorized as being alcoholics, drug addicts, there to rip you off, or just plain crazy. But every homeless person has a story and a history, just like we do. Before I first took the plunge, I was fearful of confrontation, but I learned that confrontation is just disguised fear. I rarely pass a homeless person now without saying a few words and acknowledging him as a human being. Taking the plunge into the unknown is an expansion into a different way of seeing, an acceptance of all states of being beyond one’s own limitations.”

Doing anything outside of our experience is a plunge, especially stepping into places that we resist or are fearful of. The added ingredient of meditation to the street retreats was to deepen the experience of inclusivity, that we are all a part of each other, whether we are homeless or not. Such retreats, now held in many cities across the country, confront our fear and in so doing embrace our shared humanity.

Do you have stories of when you were able to step out of your comfort zone? Do comment below.

You can pre-order a copy of our book at: BE THE CHANGE, How Meditation Can Transform You and the World. It will be published Nov 3.

Originally posted on the HuffingtonPost.com/Living

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Ed and Deb Shapiro’s new book, BE THE CHANGE, How Meditation Can Transform You And The World, forewords by the Dalai Lama and Robert Thurman, with contributors such as Marianne Williamson, astronaut Edgar Mitchell, Ellen Burstyn, Michael Beckwith, Jon Kabat-Zinn, Jane Fonda, Jack Kornfield, Byron Katie, Ed Begley, Bernie Glassman, Russell Bishop, and others, will be published Nov 3 2009 by Sterling Ethos.

Deb is the author of the award-winning book YOUR BODY SPEAKS YOUR MIND. Ed and Deb are the authors of over 15 books, and lead meditation retreats and workshops. They are corporate consultants, and the creators of Chillout daily inspirational text messages on Sprint cell phones. See: www.EdandDebShapiro.com

 

This Little Piggy Doesn’t Go to Market: How to Fight Fear and Make It Work For You

Today’s reactions to the swine flu virus include: school closings, threats of borders closing, people being told to stay off planes and trains, high school sporting events canceled.

The natural response to fear is to contract. This contracting behavior shows up in all types of animal species, from armadillos to tortoises to human beings. Right now, contracting behavior is showing up everywhere: the job market, the auto industry, the housing market, the stock market. 2009 could be called "The Year of The Contracting Human".

The irony is that there are two ways to go through life: from love or from fear. Fear contracts, love expands. Many people spend their entire lives in fear, no matter what strain of flu is being reported or what the markets are doing. And some choose to live from love, in spite of what the mainstream media is reporting this nanosecond.

So how do we combat the natural reaction to fear (contraction) when that’s not always the right decision? We don’t want to be naïve or take unnecessary risks. How, then, can we make more informed choices without succumbing to mind-numbing fear?

1. Get the facts.

It’s true: the swine flu virus is affecting people across the country. Will it affect you or someone you know? As of today, the facts are that the chances are very small that it will.

One of the fundamental problems with fear is that it renders everything in black/white, all/nothing, life/death polarities. That’s when reasoning and logic go out the window.  Of course, we should all take proper precautions, such as washing your hands and not going to a pig roast in Cancun right now. Realize that the facts in this case are on your side. But you have to get past a lot of noise to reach them.

2. Put a "stop-loss" order on your fear.

Fear is like a boulder crashing down a mountain: awfully hard to stop once it’s started. We put a stop-loss order on a stock so that if it falls below a certain price, we sell, take the loss and realize that it’s better to lose a little than lose a lot. In the same way, put a "stop-loss" order on your fear.

Mark Twain said, "I am an old man and have known a great many troubles, most of which never happened." Again, this is not to minimize or make light of a serious situation. It is to realize that we often pay far too high a price for the worry and fear we place on things that will never happen to us.

3. Look at history.

"The world has always been in the throes of agony, civilization has always been tottering on the brink. The pages of history fairly shriek with tragic tales of war, famine, poverty, pestilence and man’s inhumanity to man. After reading history for an hour, I realize that as bad as conditions are now, there are infinitely better than they used to be." – Roger Babson

It’s natural to look back and see history through rose-colored glasses. We idolize people, events, and experiences in our individual as well as our nation’s past as if those were "the good old days". But if you remember clearly, you were probably worrying about something else back then, too. As Billy Joel wrote: "The good old days weren’t always that good, and tomorrow ain’t as bad as it seems."

4. Establish a media-free zone.

You’ve heard that misery loves company. So does fear. It’s easy to get swept up in the blow-by-blow accounts from every media outlet, each trying to outshout the other. Here’s a crazy idea: turn off the TV for a while and connect with real people.

The media exists for one purpose: to sell you something. That’s why they try to keep you hooked, and fear is one of the easiest hooks to catch humans with. Realize that they’re just doing their job, which is to keep you watching/reading/listening.

Give yourself permission to unplug. Not to bury your head in the sand and become uninformed; but it’s doubtful that anyone reading this right now could be considered uninformed. In fact, you’re probably over-informed. That’s precisely why to give yourself a media-free zone.

5. Make friends with fear.

Fear is a natural emotional response to the expectation of pain. All living organisms have developed the fear response to ensure the survival of the species. For example, you’d be quite right to feel fear if you were leaning off the edge of a tall building, because every instinct in you would be screaming, "Hey, a little mistake here could make me dead!"

We experience fear when we perceive that we’re not in control. Fear is the emotional effect of absence of personal control over your situation. Therefore, there’s an inverse relationship between control and fear. The more control we have over our situation, the less fear we feel.

There are things you can control, and things you can’t. As the sporting philosopher Mickey Rivers said, "Ain’t no sense worrying about things you got control over, because if you got control, ain’t no sense worrying. And ain’t no sense worrying about things you got no control over, because if you got no control, ain’t no sense worrying."

Knowledge is king and awareness is power. The positive actions you take to face any situation in life give you control over your behavior and emotions. That’s how to fight fear and make it work for you.

* * *

Noah St. John, Ph.D. is the author of The Secret Code of Success: 7 Hidden Steps to More Wealth and Happiness (HarperCollins) and inventor of The Afformations Method.

He helps people get rid of head trash and get better results faster, easier and with less effort. Read a free book excerpt at http://SuccessClinic.com .

 

God’s Dictionary: Cost

Cost

 

con- = together

+

stare = to stand

 

            A wise friend assures me that everything either costs life or contributes to life. It makes sense to me. We live in a polarized reality on earth. Cost and contribution are two ways to look at the activity of living.

 

          There is a cost to life. That cost is the choices we make. If we choose one thing, we do not choose another. Interestingly, the etymology of the verb cost comes from Latin roots meaning to stand together. 

 

          And isn’t that what paying the cost means? We stand with our choices, we pay the price those choices mandate. If I choose Rocky Road and Mint Chip, I’m not having Jamoca Almond Fudge and Peppermint Swirl, right?

 

          A lot of us are afraid to make choices, but not choosing is also a choice of a sort. Writer Madeleine L’Engle calls this “the terrible gift of free will.” I’d rather stand with what I choose, pay the cost, learn whatever I need to learn, and choose again. Ask: How can I become fearless in my choosing today?

 

Infinition:

 

          I know there’s a cost to my choices. Part of it is to stand with whatever I choose and pay the cost of having it. I do so willingly because I know I can always choose again—and again.

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