Thursday, May 10, 2012

More on Fear & Gratitude

There are lots of external reasons I might be having trouble finding a job - not least, Wisconsin's continued employment hemorrhage under Scott Walker that keeps us mired in the worst of the recession while other states begin recovery. And the one thing a writer must do to be published (or produced) is write & submit & write & submit & write & submit - letting the rejections wisp away like so much morning mist under the rising summer sun. So to greet job-seeking failure and play-submission failure with gratitude, as I talked about in my last post, does not mean I should stop applying for jobs or stop writing & submitting.

It is primarily a directive to release fear, be open to what is as it comes, and not to internalize social "failure" as a comment on the nature of the universe or my place in it.

Hard enough even without all the good reasons to fear. Such as being on the edge of not covering my bills. Or aging painfully in a country where, despite oodles of wealth, the only workers allowed access to good health care are fully employed professionals, politicians, and soldiers.

Still, fear is of no use. My conditions won't change if I greet them with fear. Worse, fear eats my creative energy while insisting I should quit.

"Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?" is one of the more useful Jesus sayings. Great teachers from other traditions similarly say to let go of fear. Forget insurance. Forget living your life in order to amass enough fortune to protect you through old age.

There is no guarantee, here, that bad things won't happen to you if you do not fear. It is not a magic prayer bullet that can bring you money & cars & a hunky guy or curvacious gal. Your health may crash. Your home may burn. Your loved one may die. You may be exhausted day after day by the struggle to get just enough to go on. However it happens, you will experience loss and will need to morn. But moving through loss and grief without fear is one way to get on the road to the greatest good - directly perceiving the delicious, brilliant, flowing energy in which we swim and of which we are all made.

Whatever my pains and difficulties, on that road the only things that make any sense are joy and gratitude.

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